Bringing in the harvest is always an exciting time, but I have to admit, there’s a certain amount of produce that doesn’t ever make it to the apartment. One of the true pleasures of gardening is being able to sample and enjoy fruit and vegetables warmed by the sun. Now these strawberries are pretty sweet and loaded with seeds. Needless to say, they are best eaten early in the morning when puttering around the garden.
Not only is the fruit ready now, but the happy plant is setting more flowers. This plant could be moved into a sunnier location – ideally strawberries should be getting 6+ hours of sunlight each day. But it is producing a good quantity of runners and because it’s tucked in between the troughs the neighbourhood birds have yet to discover that I’ve serving breakfast snacks of the balcony if they wanted to indulge.
Unfortunately I haven’t had any luck wintering over a strawberry plant. I always intend to take it downstairs and tuck it into the bigger planters around our building, but each fall, I never quite get that done before things start to freeze up.
I’ve also got a small blueberry bush that has set fruit. First time trial for me. It’s a Duke Blueberry that is supposed to be cold hardy and resistant to frost damage. But it’s definitely an annual on the balcony. I can only hope the rock-hard green berries eventually turn the right colour. Agriculture Alberta says that ‘blueberries should be grown in full sun, like acidic soil and need a good supply of water during fruit production. Good snow cover and constant cold are essential for the winter survival of the blueberry. Two cultivars from Minnesota, Northblue and Northern Country, are worthy of trial in gardens with acid soils.’
You’ll be the first to know if the blueberries ripen.